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Ex-Pantera singer says Metallica's ‘Load' should never have come out

While many fans consider 2003's St. Anger the low point of Metallica's recording career, a strong case can be made for the group's 1996 release, Load. One man making that argument is ex-Pantera frontman Philip Anselmo, who has explained why he thinks Metallica's sixth studio effort should have never seen the light of day.

Asked in the latest issue of Metal Hammer to name an album that he thinks should never have been released, Anselmo replied, “I would have to say Load by Metallica. I mean, it’s a terrible record, man. I just don’t get it. If you’re gonna put out a record like that, just do a f***ing side project or something, ya know?”

Anselmo first took his scorn of Load public in 2003 and has returned to it on and off, although he has generally said good things about Metallica and is friendly with its members.

Load sharply divided fans when it came out in June 1996, shocking many listeners with a far more diverse sound that almost completely abandoned thrash and incorporated blues, grunge and even country music.

The band members also retooled their image on the record, cutting their hair and doing photos that showed them wearing a variety of different fashions and even donning make-up -- which frontman James Hetfield later admitted to disliking.

Load was followed a year and a half later by Reload, a second collection of tracks from the same sessions that were completed later on.

Metallica is currently at work on its 10th studio album.

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